Korean cuisine is a delightful mixture of Japanese, Mongolian, and Chinese cuisine, having its own unique style. Usually, the food is considered quite healthy. But about its calorie content, We cannot simply answer yes or no.

It varies depending on the specific dishes and ingredients used in the meal. However, some foods like kimchi and sauteed vegetables are low in calories, while Korean barbecue or Fried dishes hold high-calorie content.

Here, we have specified the calories of Korean food to help you note the calories you consume through the help of the following chart


Is Korean Food High In Calories

Korean food, like the cuisine of many nations, offers a diverse range of meals, some of which are heavier in calories than others. Korean food’s calorie content is determined by various factors such as the products used, cooking methods, and portion sizes. Here’s a quick rundown:

Varied selection: Korean cuisine contains a wide variety of meals, ranging from lighter alternatives like kimchi (fermented vegetables) and vegetable-based banchan (side dishes) to heartier dishes like bulgogi (marinated and grilled beef) and bibimbap (rice mixed with vegetables and often meat or tofu).

Rice and Noodles: Rice and noodles are staples in many Korean dishes. Rice is a source of carbs, yet it is low in fat. The calorie count of noodles varies depending on whether they are served in a broth-based soup or stir-fried with various additions.

Protein: Beef, hog, chicken, shellfish, and tofu are all protein sources in Korean cuisine. These dishes’ calorie value is determined by how they are prepared and seasoned. Grilled or steamed foods have fewer calories than fried or heavily sauced foods.

Banchan (Side Dishes): Korean meals are usually accompanied by a variety of banchan, small side dishes served family-style. Some banchan are low in calories, such as kimchi and pickled vegetables, while others, such as pan-fried pancakes, can be heavy in calories.

Spices and Sauces: Korean cuisine is recognized for its robust flavors, generally obtained through spicy seasonings and sauces. While these can add flavor to dishes, some sauces and marinades may have extra sugars or fats, adding to the overall calorie count.

Portion Sizes: As with any cuisine, portion sizes affect the calorie content of a meal. Larger servings have more calories by definition than smaller ones.

Food NameCalories CountServing Size
Tteokbokki350 – 450 calories1 cup
Kimbap200 – 300 calories1 roll
Korean rice cake150 calories1 cup
Jajangmyeon600 – 800 calories1 serving
Bulgogi250 calories3 ounces
Korean BBQ400 – 600 calories1 serving
Samyang noodles1,500 calories1 package
Beef bulgogi250 calories3 ounces
Kimchi pancake200 calories1 pancake
Korean fish cake100 calories2 fish cakes
Korean sweet potato100 calories1 medium sweet potato

Low Calorie Korean Food

Korean foods which are low in calories:

Food NameCaloriesServing Size
Sundubu jjigae (silken tofu stew)200 calories1 cup
Japchae (glass noodle stir-fry)250 calories1 cup
Bibimbap (rice bowl topped with vegetables, meat, and egg)300 calories1 bowl
Kimchi stew150 calories1 cup
Bulgogi (marinated beef)250 calories3 ounces
Fish cake soup100 calories1 cup
Tteokguk (rice cake soup)150 calories1 cup
Kimchi pancake100 calories1 pancake
Korean sweet potato100 calories1 medium sweet potato
Steamed vegetables30 calories1 cup
Brown rice160 calories1 cup

Low Calorie Korean Snacks

Here are some low-calorie Korean snacks to chop on

Snack NameCaloriesServing Size
Tteokbokki350 – 450 calories1 cup
Kimbap200 – 300 calories1 roll
Yakgwa250 calories10 cookies
Dalgona100 calories1 piece
Gangjeong150 calories10 crackers
Honey Butter Chips550 calories1 bag
Pepero150 calories1 stick
Bungeoppang200 calories1 pancake
Hobaekjuk150 calories1 cup

Is Korean Food Healthy to Eat Every Day?

Yes, the traditional Korean food is healthy to eat every day. It usually revolves around vegetables and fermented foods like kimchi, soups, rice meat, and seafood.

The healthy choices include kimchi, seasoned vegetable side dishes, bibimbap, konggusku, and many others. But keep in mind that Korean foods are usually high in salt, and some dishes might have higher calories.

The plants used as food were examined for their medical effect in a scientific study at Korean Buddhist temples from 1997 to 2002. Medicinal plants have been discovered to be effective in treating digestive, circulatory, and respiratory illnesses.

 Because well-fermented kimchi is sour, it is good for the gallbladder and liver. Kimchi contains vitamins A, B, and C and Lactobacillus, a probiotic. Probiotics promote digestion, enhance the immune system, improve vitamin absorption, and filter out harmful bacteria or toxins. They have also been connected to cholesterol reduction.

Korean Vs Thai Food

Korean FoodThai Food
Korean cuisine is more earthy, with a heavy emphasis on pickled items (particularly KimChee) and braised meats. Kimchi (preserved vegetables) plays an essential role in Korean cuisine. There are numerous spicy meals, but they differ from Thai ones because Korean dishes are sweeter and hot. Both rely on rice as a base and coal grilling as a cooking method.Thai cuisine incorporates a variety of tropical spices, fruits, coconut milk, spicy chilies, and a variety of seafood items. Thai cuisine extensively uses fresh herbs (lemon grass, Thai basil, cilantro, etc.) and coconut milk. On the other hand, these items are not widely used in Korean cuisine. Thai food also includes a variety of curry dishes, making it even more unique.


To sum up, Korean food offers diverse flavours and meals with various calorie counts. While some Korean cuisine, such as tteokbokki and certain barbecue dishes, are high in calories, many traditional options are low in calories, emphasising vegetables, fermented foods like kimchi, and lean proteins.

When chosen carefully, this balance makes Korean food a healthy choice for everyday consumption. The presence of probiotic-rich foods, such as kimchi, increases its nutritional value by aiding digestion and immune system support.

However, portion control and mindful choices are required to truly enjoy the health advantages of Korean food, like with any cuisine.

On the other hand, Thai food is based on a tropical taste fusion that includes fresh herbs and coconut milk. Portion control is required because of the high sugar and coconut milk content.

When making careful choices, both cuisines may be enjoyed healthily and offer unique culinary adventures enhanced by different cultural backgrounds.